Research Institute and Academic Resources

The Institute on American Jewish - Israeli Relations

In recent years the relations between Israel and American Jewry have been treated in a host of studies with increasingly alarmist titles like Two Worlds of Judaism (Charles S. Liebman and Steve M. Cohen), Are We One? (Jerold Auerbach) and Divided We Stand (Ofira Seliktar). Furthermore, a series of reports in the last decade that analyzed American Jewish public opinion toward Israel (most notably "Beyond Distancing" by Steven M. Cohen and Ari Kelman in 2007 and a more recent a 2010 report of the Jewish People Policy Institute) have claimed that American Jews have increasingly distanced themselves from the Jewish state. This long trail of literature has documented weakened attachment to Israel among American Jews, and especially among younger Jews.

Are American Jews and Israelis drifting apart? If that is the case, what are the reasons for that? Is it due to the continuing Israeli-Arab conflict, or is due to the growing rate of intermarriage among American Jews that is linked to a diminished feeling of identification with Jews around the world? Or is perhaps the alienation of American Jews from Israel just an expression of pesky cultural differences - Israelis are from Mars, American Jews are from Venus?

Recognizing the importance of the relations between the world's two largest Jewish communities, the American Jewish University has established a new institute both to study and enhance the relationship between the American Jewish and Israeli communities. The institute will develop community-based programs to advance the institute's mission.

The Sigi Ziering Institute-

The Sigi Ziering Institute: Exploring the Ethical and Religious Implications of the Holocaust is a national center investigating the ethical and religious ramifications of the Shoah for future generations. Dedicated to Jewish life and the Jewish future, the Institute hosts programs, seminars , conferences and public lectures exploring the role of the Holocaust and its relation to legal, medical, business, professional, religious and governmental ethics as well as the role of the Shoah in contemporary Jewish identity. The Institute educates rabbis and Jewish educators, as well as clergy of all faiths, on the religious implications of the Holocaust in order to foster a greater understanding of the Shoah.